Hurrah, it’s Friday and thus, the last day of work before a Christmas holiday for most people. Over the Christmas period, there will be no posts on here on either Christmas Day or Boxing Day. I plan to be knee deep in Christmas pudding, pork pies and a rather excellent Chilli Mustard I bought the other day.
Never one to digress, we’ll move swiftly from mustard to Liverpool, where Raheem Sterling is reported to being very close to signing a new long-term contract. As I’ve read it, Sterling goes from earning £2,000 p/w to £30,000 p/w and that figure will rise over the course of his five year contract to match the salaries of £60,000 p/w Stewart Downing and £100,000 p/w Joe Cole. Understandably, there is a huge risk being taken by Liverpool in rewarding young talent with a massive contract. I don’t know the stipulations behind Sterling earning more money as the contract goes on, maybe he has to hit certain targets, but if his earnings just go up in blocks as he gets older, then that’s a huge price to pay for talent which may not realise its potential.
Sterling signing a new contract is fantastic for Liverpool, don’t get me wrong, but I feel they could have got a lot more for their money. A 17 year old should not be earning £30,000 p/w and I get the feeling that Sterling is growing a bit too big for his own boots very early. It’s a lot of money to pay somebody so young. For me, wages of £10,000 are more suitable, not £30,000.
Of course, Sterling is quite capable of achieving great things in the next few years and if he does, then you can say it’s money well spent, but at the moment it’s all a gamble. Should you be gambling on a £30,000 p/w contract for a 17 year old? Not for me.
One of the more ridiculous transfer clauses I’ve ever come across, is Newcastle’s insertion of a £7 million buy-out clause in Demba Ba’s contract. When Newcastle first signed Ba, they must have held the hope that Ba would come good and they may want to sell him for significantly more than £7 million. I understand that Newcastle signed Ba on a free, but to allow one of your top players to leave for as little as £7 million would be a massive blow to Alan Pardew.
So far this season, Ba has scored 11 goals in 17 appearances, having scored 16 times in 32 matches last season and 7 in 10 for West Ham before that. Ba has a great strike record and it’s a massive pity for Newcastle that they would be letting a very good striker leave for under what Newcastle value him at.
Where could Ba go? Well, there are rumours of Arsenal being heavily interested and with the striker admitting that moving to Arsenal would be a “dream move”, it’s all set up for Demba Ba to move to Arsenal on the back of three seasons’ good form, score five in his first three games, all before his chronic knee problem flares up again for the first time in two years. Ba was once described as a “ticking time bomb” by Stoke City’s doctors and although he appears to have been fine in spite of that quote, you just know he would join Arsenal and BAM! Out for a season.